Dr.

O’Meara’s Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Rehabilitation Protocol
www.PalomarOrtho.com

Anterior Cruciate Ligament Reconstruction Rehabilitation Protocol Zero to Two Weeks Post-op Crutch Ambulation WBAT Stationary Bicycle Passive Knee Extension & Stretching Patella Mobilization Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Active Leg Extension Exercises No Running or Jumping Two to Four Weeks Post-op Stationary Bicycle Passive Knee Extension & Stretching Patella Mobilization Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quad / VMO Training (wall sits. lunges. step downs) Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Active Leg Extension Exercises No Running or Jumping .

cariocas.4 Weeks to 5 Months Weeks Post-op Stationary Bicycle Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quadriceps Strengthening (weight training) Adductor Strengthening (weight training) Calf Strengthening (weight training) Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Active Leg Extension Exercises No Running or Jumping Five to Seven Months Post-op Stationary Bicycle Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quadriceps Strengthening (weight training) Adductor Strengthening (weight training) Calf Strengthening (weight training) Jumping Rope Jogging (level surfaces only) Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Leg Extension Exercises No sprinting. sprinting) Injury Prevention Training Gradual Return to Sports Restrictions: No Leg Extension Exercises 3 . cutting or leaping > Seven Months Post-op Stationary Bicycle Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quadriceps Strengthening (weight training) Adductor Strengthening (weight training) Calf Strengthening (weight training) Jumping Rope Jogging (level surfaces only) Agility Training (figure 8s.

Zero to Two Weeks Post-op Crutch Ambulation WBAT Stationary Bicycle Passive Knee Extension & Stretching Patella Mobilization Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Active Leg Extension Exercises No Running or Jumping 4 .

5 .

step downs) Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Active Leg Extension Exercises No Running or Jumping Hamstring Stretching 6 . lunges.Two to Four Weeks Post-op Stationary Bicycle Passive Knee Extension & Stretching Patella Mobilization Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quad / VMO Training (wall sits.

a single set program. The most effective strength training and rehabilitation programs include at least one set of the maximum number of repetitions possible for each exercise performed (“exercise to fatigue”). The strength training should involve gentle smooth repetitions. so use a lighter weight that will allow at least 15 repetitions in a normal set. The amount of weight should be increased once you are able to complete a full 3 sets of 15 reps.Hamstring Strengthening The hamstrings are the primary dynamic stabilizers of the knee and they protect your ACL reconstruction. No jerking or yanking! In the third set of each exercise. Higher numbers of repetitions (15 – 20) favor increased muscle endurance while building muscle strength as well. every other day. during the first month of strengthening. every other day. is adequately effective at improving muscle strength and endurance. Three sets of 15 – 20 reps performed every other day is an optimum strengthening and rehabilitation program. try to “exercise to fatigue”. Each exercise should be performed as 3 sets of 15 repetitions. However. 7 .

4 Weeks to 5 Months Weeks Post-op Stationary Bicycle Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quadriceps Strengthening (weight training) Adductor Strengthening (weight training) Calf Strengthening (weight training) Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Active Leg Extension Exercises No Running or Jumping Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening Bicycle Training 8 .

a single set program. 9 . Three sets of 15 – 20 reps performed every other day is an optimum strengthening and rehabilitation program. Higher numbers of repetitions (15 – 20) favor increased muscle endurance while building muscle strength as well. When using the leg press machines. is adequately effective at improving muscle strength and endurance. try to “exercise to fatigue”. Each exercise should be performed as 3 sets of 15 repetitions. every other day. the most important one is the Vastus Medialis (VMO). The strength training should involve gentle smooth repetitions. every other day. do NOT bend your knees more than 60 degrees. so use a lighter weight that will allow at least 15 repetitions in a normal set.Quadriceps Strengthening The quad consists of 4 muscles. during the first month of strengthening. The most effective strength training and rehabilitation programs include at least one set of the maximum number of repetitions possible for each exercise performed (“exercise to fatigue”). However. No jerking or yanking! In the third set of each exercise. When performing half-squats. The amount of weight should be increased once you are able to complete a full 3 sets of 15 reps. do NOT flex your knees more than 90 degrees.

Adductor Strengthening Calf Strengthening 10 .

cutting or leaping Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening Bicycle Training 11 .Five to Seven Months Post-op Stationary Bicycle Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quadriceps Strengthening (weight training) Adductor Strengthening (weight training) Calf Strengthening (weight training) Jumping Rope Jogging (level surfaces only) Restrictions: No Straight Leg Raising or Leg Extension Exercises No sprinting.

Quadriceps Strengthening Adductor Strengthening Calf Strengthening 12 .

Jogging 13 .

> Seven Months Post-op Stationary Bicycle Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening (weight training) Quadriceps Strengthening (weight training) Adductor Strengthening (weight training) Calf Strengthening (weight training) Jumping Rope Jogging (level surfaces only) Agility Training (figure 8s. cariocas. sprinting) Injury Prevention Training Gradual Return to Sports Restrictions: No Leg Extension Exercises Hamstring Stretching & Strengthening Bicycle Training .

Quadriceps Strengthening Adductor Strengthening Calf Strengthening 15 .

Jogging Agility Training Injury Prevention Training 16 .

Return to Sports 17 .